facetime/face time

notes on an exchange

Over the weekend Child x (year 7) complains to Teenager y (year 10) about the lack of wifi access at the activity centre we’re staying in:

we can see a network but we can’t connect, it means we can’t facetime each other”

“if you lift up your head from your screen you can face-time each other without wifi”

I watched this little exchange with amusement. Parents often ask me about their child’s relationship with a given electronic device, namely their inability to be separated from it. The older teenager who made the facetime remark was one such child, his head was never out of his nintendo DS and when that was replaced with an iTouch when he started secondary school the problem got worse. I reminded him of this and asked him what had changed. He responded with the tumblr-esque soundbite, “nothing, I just grew up. Music is better live than on youtube, and people are better in person than through a screen. Once they’re old enough to be able to explore the world beyond their screens as freely as they can do through their screens, they’ll change their minds”.


2 thoughts on “facetime/face time

  1. John says:

    What a fantastic observation and a great story… there’ll be more on the (im)materiality argument later (how you can be co-present simultaneously onscreen and off it in the same space) – thanks for this…


  2. Juliana Matos says:

    I believe finally we can start to analyse the impact of internet on children, because those kids that were born online are now growing up, and this is the time to think how they are going to be in the future. It’s good, though, to read that some of them have learned that there’s a moment for everything, and that virtual life does not replace real life (and vice-versa). That’s quite intriguing.


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